The proposal to develop boat taxis in HCM City must be submitted to the city Government by the end of this year for approval, as requested by the city People's Committee.

Under the project, two boat-taxi routes will be developed in the city by Thuong Nhat Co Ltd.

The first route runs on Tau Hu – Ben Nghe canal along with Vo Van Kiet Avenue, and the other runs on Sai Gon River from Linh Dong ward in Thu Duc district to Bach Dang Wharf in District 1, according to Nguyen Kim Toan, director of Thuong Nhat company.

The company will buy eight large boats each with a capacity of 80 seats, half of which will be operated during peak hours.

The company will also buy 10 small boats to service passengers during off-peak hours.

According to Toan, the fare for boat taxis would be higher than buses because of the high initial cost of investment.

Boat routes are expected to start operation in early 2013.

If two routes operate at 50 percent of capacity, they would transport about 5,000 passengers a day.

Developing boat taxis will help reduce the increasing traffic congestion on the roads, according to transport experts./.